Thursday, 19 December 2013

European Parliament: Exchange on EU13 Opportunities in Development

On 18 December 2013, the Development Committee of the European Parliament exchanged views on challenges and opportunities for newer EU Member States to contribute to the implementation of the post-2015 development agenda, especially by sharing the transition experience.

Lithuanian MEP Mr Donskis, member of the European Parliament (EP) Development Committee suggested the exchange of views on this topic. Inputs came from the Lithuanian Vice-Minister of Foreign Affairs Rolandas Krisciunas and Evelin Andrespok from the Estonian NGDO platform AKÜ, representing Civil Society as CONCORD delegate.

Mr. Krisciunas highlighted that the transition experience is an asset of Lithuania which can play a crucial role in structural transformation processes of both donors and recipients of development assistance.

CSOs also expressed their views on the topic. CONCORD was represented by Evelin Andrespok from the Estonian Roundtable for Development Cooperation AKÜ, a member of CONCORD. She highlighted that many EU13 countries are very active on the topic of development cooperation. Already four countries (Czech Republic, Poland and Slovak Republic) are members of OECD DAC which shows the relevance of development cooperation for them. Most cooperation is held with Eastern Partnership countries. Today the aim to contribute 0.33% of the GNI to ODI by 2015 is far from being reached in most EU13 countries. Therefore CSOs encourage member states to fulfil their commitments. Ms. Andrespok also tackled the problem of inflated aid such as in-country costs for migrants, which does not contribute to poverty reduction but figures in the development budget. Regarding the future of development cooperation, human rights should be in the centre of the time post-MDG, Ms. Andrespok pointed out. Global inequalities are increasing and should be addressed, as well as linking environment and development issues. Long term solutions require structural changes and EU13 countries have experience in this.

Members of the EP (MEPs) underlined the comparative advantage of the EU in the fields of transition and social inclusiveness. Nevertheless copying of models has to be avoided, instead through good knowledge management the European lessons learnt can be translated to the realities of developing countries.

Watch the Development Committee meeting online here.

Information provided by TRIALOG

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